Nowadays, international tourism is the biggest industry in the world. Unfortunately, international tourism creates tension rather than understanding between people from different cultures. To what extent do you agree or disagree?
1. It is necessary to develop the tourist trade, for it contributes a lot to increasing understanding between nations.
2. As the saying goes, “Seeing is believing.” Only a trip to an unfamiliar land can help us understand the people and culture there.
3. Since tourism helps increase understanding between people, it will finally wipe out prejudice against other nations, and make the world a more peaceful one.
4. Tourism contributes significantly to many countries' GNP (Gross National Product). The economy of some nations is based on the tourist industry.
5. Tourism helps develop a nation’s commerce because tourists are most likely to buy souvenirs wherever they go.
6. Tourism provides jobs for many people and helps solve or ease the social problem of unemployment.
7. Tourism helps accelerate a city's construction and its embellishment.
8. Contact with tourists from afar widens the horizon of the local people.
9. The tourist trade gives people a chance to enjoy the beautiful scenery of the world and the wonders of mankind.
10. Tourism will help people learn about different cultures of the world.
1. Tourism cannot increase understanding between nations because tourists are often trapped in big hotels and only gaze at the natives from a distance.
2. Tourism does not wipe out prejudice, but leads to the persistence of national stereotypes because when travelling, you notice only characteristics which confirm your preconceptions.
3. It is true that foreign friends can make people understand stereotypes are absurd and harmful, but the tourist trade prevents people from making foreign friends.
4. Since tourists do not have time to mix with the local people, they cannot have a full view of the local culture.
5. Tourism makes some parts of the world too crowded a place to live in.
6. Tourism creates pollution and has destroyed many beautiful scenic spots.
7. Tourists cannot have a full enjoyment of the beautiful scenery because the places they visit are restricted by organizers.
8. As the saying goes, “Travel makes a wise man better, but a fool worse.”
9. Contact with and assimilation of other cultures will reduce the uniqueness of one’s own culture and make the world less colourful than before.
The booming tourist trade has brought about mass exchange of population between different nations. At first glance, this bridges the understanding and communication between different cultures. In my opinion, however, this fast-growing industry has produced tension between people from different cultural background.
The first barrier for curious tourists from all over the world is the problem of language. The most attractive destinations of tourism are, ironically, less developed areas where the world language --- English, has not been prevalent. Therefore, the direct contact between tourists and local residents has been cut down. The tour guide, normally interpreter too, becomes the only link of communication. But unfortunately, as indicated in any guide-training handbook, the responsibility of a tour guide is to arouse the tourists’ interest and passion rather than present a lecture on cultural difference. Thus, tourists, beyond their expectations, cannot fully understand the cultures which appear to be exotic.
Another obstacle is from the local government. As I argue before, in most of case, the ‘local’ refers to the less developed regions. In order to attract foreign investment and maintain the local tourism industry, the officials, deliberately or not, only hope to show outsiders the positive side of the area, hence, the part of local living. As a result, conducted tours are carefully censored. The tourists, or ‘prisoners’ to some extent, are allowed to see only what the organizers want them to see and no more. A window-shop schedule gives no opportunity to wander off on one’s own. In this way, even for a knowledgeable traveler with practical experience can only ‘see’ the superficial of the local culture. If so, an instant misunderstanding will be falsely shaped.
All things considered, the international tourism contributes absolutely nothing to increasing understanding. Instead, in its way as it is today, a hideous prejudice and misinterpretation will be established.